Hero 5 black edition
ОБЗОР: GoPro HERO5 Black — крутая экшен-камера для всех и на каждый день
Экшен-камеры уже давно перестали быть аксессуарами исключительно для экстремалов и широко применяются в повседневной жизни обычными людьми. Кто-то ведёт видеоблог, кто-то создаёт семейную видеотеку. Экшен-камера не боится воды и ударов, её удобно брать в путешествие и на отдых. Использовать для съёмки специализированный девайс всегда лучше.
Производители реагируют на тенденцию, делают экшен-камеры проще, понятнее. Корректируется и маркетинг. Фотографии горнолыжников и скайдайверов на промостраницах HERO5 теперь делят место с далёкими от экстрима персонажами, снимающими рядовые моменты жизни.
Приехавшая в редакцию HERO5 Black является отличным примером универсализированного девайса «для всех и на каждый день» с максимально лёгким интуитивным управлением.
Мы изучили новую GoPro и нашли её сильные и слабые стороны.
Пятое поколение GoPro HERO
Линейка HERO5 представлена всего двумя устройствами: флагманской Black по цене 31 990 рублей и более простой Session по цене 24 990 рублей. Если учесть стремление GoPro сделать камеры подходящими всем, то сокращение модельного ряда выглядит вполне логично.
Обратите внимание на стоимость HERO4 Black в крупных торговых сетях и официальных магазинах. Сейчас средняя цена флагмана предыдущего поколения на «Яндекс.Маркете» составляет 35 990 рублей, а по факту новинка выходит всего на пару тысяч дороже предшественницы. Таким образом, исчезает вопрос выбора между «новее, но дороже» и «старее, но дешевле».
GoPro HERO5 Black
С точки зрения разрешений и кадров в секунду HERO5 Black не совершила каких-то революционных прорывов. Надежды на появление режима 4К при 60 кадрах в секунду не оправдались, максимальный битрейт составляет 60 Мб/с. В зависимости от выбранного разрешения пользователю доступны различные углы съёмки, начиная от стандартного и заканчивая сверхшироким, а также режим, устраняющий эффект «рыбьего глаза».
Вот полный список поддерживаемых разрешений съёмки видео:
- 4К @ 30 fps;
- 2,7K @ 60 fps;
- 2,7K 4:3 @ 30 fps;
- 1 440p @ 80 fps;
- 1 080p @ 120 fps;
- 960p @ 120 fps;
- 720p @ 240 fps;
- 480p @ 240 fps.
Увидеть работу камеры в основных режимах вы можете на видео ниже.
Зачем же покупать HERO5 Black, если она снимает почти так же, как и камера предыдущего поколения?
Если для вас это первая флагманская GoPro, то основная причина в практически идентичной стоимости и безусловном технологическом превосходстве перед более старой моделью.
Если же у вас есть HERO4 Black, то доводом может стать набор разнообразных крупных и мелких нововведений и улучшений. По отдельности каждое из них может казаться не таким уж впечатляющим, но в совокупности получается камера совсем другого уровня.
Очень полезное нововведение для любителей, позволяющее получить куда более качественные видео без профессиональных аксессуаров, но реализовано оно далеко не идеально. Помимо неизбежного урезания снимаемой области на 10%, стабилизация не работает при частоте кадров выше 60 в секунду, а для 4К-видео не предусмотрена вовсе.
Да, конечно, 4К-мониторы до сих пор есть лишь у единиц и популярнейшим форматом по-прежнему остаётся видео 1080p @ 60 fps, но раз уж в описании устройства заявлена стабилизация, то работать она должна во всех режимах.
RAW-фотографии и WDR
HERO4 Black делает 8-мегапиксельные фото и только в JPG, а новая HERO5 Black умеет делать 12-мегапиксельные фото в RAW. Ещё одно доказательство того, что GoPro хочет сделать свои устройства максимально универсальными и подходящими для всех, в том числе для фотографов, которым критически важна возможность качественной постобработки снимков.
Для дополнительного улучшения фото и видео предусмотрен режим WDR, позволяющий запечатлеть больше деталей при неблагоприятном освещении.
Управление одной кнопкой или голосом + встроенный сенсорный дисплей
Мы привыкли к тому, что для съёмки фото и видео на смартфон достаточно одной кнопки. HERO5 Black устроена точно так же. Нажатие на расположенную сверху большую кнопку автоматически включает камеру и начинает запись. Повторное нажатие завершает запись и выключает камеру.
В теории HERO5 Black можно управлять удалённо с помощью голоса, но на практике всё не так просто. Для корректного голосового распознавания команд требуется относительная тишина в окружающем пространстве и знание английского, потому что русский язык не поддерживается.
Выбор режима съёмки, просмотр отснятого материала и управление им, а также прочие настройки осуществляются с помощью дополнительной кнопки и встроенного 2-дюймового сенсорного дисплея на тыльной стороне камеры.
Малый размер негативно сказывается на простоте управления, зато к точности и скорости распознавания, а также к качеству картинки претензий нет.
Пожалуй, одно из самых важных нововведений HERO5 Black, но и у него есть обратная сторона. Действительно, новое поколение камер GoPro может работать при погружении на глубину до 10 метров без каких-либо дополнительных аксессуаров. Отсеки с аккумулятором и картой памяти, порты micro-HDMI и USB-C надёжно защищены герметичными заглушками, но ведь тот прозрачный кейс защищал HERO4 Black не только от воды.
Избавившись от дополнительного слоя оболочки, конструкторы поставили под удар сам корпус камеры и объектив в частности. Не забываем и о сенсорном экране на тыльной стороне, а также фронтальном монохромном дисплее. Все эти элементы вряд ли выдержат серьёзное механическое воздействие, а комплектный кейс-бампер с креплением не обеспечивает полную защиту.
HERO5 Black можно заковать в дополнительный кейс, но аксессуар не входит в комплект и облегчит кошелёк ещё на 55 долларов или евро в зависимости от того, где вы будете его заказывать.
- Несмотря на более мощную начинку время работы HERO5 Black такое же, как у камеры предыдущего поколения, за счёт слегка увеличенной ёмкости аккумулятора, составляющей 1 220 мА·ч против 1 160 мА·ч в HERO4 Black.
- HERO5 Black имеет встроенный модуль GPS, и это большой плюс для любителей организовывать медиатеки по месту съёмки.
- В отличие от предыдущего поколения, HERO5 пишет звук в стерео.
- За дополнительную плату можно приобрести подписку GoPro Plus — персональное облачное хранилище со встроенным редактором, куда будут автоматически заливаться отснятые фото и видео. Правда, для работы этой системы камера должна быть подключена к питанию от адаптера, который не входит в комплект.
GoPro HERO5 Black получилась противоречивой, но положительные моменты явно перевешивают.
Ругать HERO5 Black будут в основном хардкорщики, использующие камеру для съёмок реальной жести в самых экстремальных условиях. Они имеют право крыть производителя матом за отсутствие в коробке полноценного кейса, но эти же профи знают, что GoPro — это не просто устройство для съёмки, а целая экосистема с огромным набором аксессуаров. Какая бы дичь ни пришла им в голову, у GoPro наверняка найдётся примочка для реализации задуманного.
Отсутствие стабилизации и 60 fps в 4К — это вина технологического прогресса в целом. Производительность процессоров в ближайшем будущем наверняка подрастёт, и тогда фанаты качества получат желаемое.
Голосовое управление без поддержки русского — это суровая, но уже давно привычная реальность. Куда полезнее выучить наконец-то английский, хотя можно и ждать языковой пакет в следующем обновлении прошивки.
В остальном HERO5 Black — замечательная камера. Лучшая GoPro в истории и прекрасный продвинутый заменитель смартфона для съёмки фото и видео. Производитель хотел сделать устройство, удобное и понятное для обычного человека, и ему это удалось.
Остаётся спросить продвинутых пользователей GoPro. Что вы думаете о HERO5 и модели Black в частности? Стоит ли брать и почему? Какие плюсы и минусы, не затронутые в обзоре, вы уже успели обнаружить? Делитесь своими мыслями в комментариях.
GoPro HERO5 Black →
GoPro Hero5 Black review
GoPro has long been synonymous with extreme sports enthusiasts who insist on leaping off buildings with a camera attached to their head, rather than doing something more sedate of a weekend.
[Update: The GoPro Hero5 Black has not only been replaced by the Hero6 Black, but also the new Hero7 Black as well. The Hero6 Black offers 4K at 60fps, as well as improved image stabilization and numerous other tweaks, while the Hero7 Black delivers an even better image stabilization, improved user interface, as well as a host of other refinements and improvements. Don't discount the Hero5 Black though - it's still a cracking action camera that's seen a hefty price drop in recent months. If you can live without some of the new features that the Hero6 Black and Hero7 Black brings, then the Hero5 Black is still a great buy.]
The footage captured by these sturdy little action cams (or POV cameras) has historically been among the best, if not the best, on the market, and as such has been used by everyone from skilled filmmakers to amateurs looking to add a professional sheen to their YouTube channel.
- 4K video capture at 30fps
- 2.0-inch touchscreen
- 12MP still images
Unfortunately, previous generations of GoPros have erred on the unapproachable side, lacking a rear screen to set up and review footage, bamboozling users with a variety of complicated camera settings, and making it a pain to retrieve footage and images when in a rush or on the move.
As a result, a plethora of rivals have popped up, boasting a number of user-friendly features in an attempt to steal sales.
TomTom's Bandit, Garmin's Virb range and the seriously affordable Olfi camera all offer 4K video recording, but with a much friendlier UI designed to appeal to those starting out in the action cam game.
Like all good tech companies, GoPro has listened to customer grumbles, and has thoroughly updated its latest line of cameras to ensure they still pack the same heavyweight features but are generally easier to live with.
That range now consists of the Hero Session, Hero5 Session and the daddy of the lot: the Hero5 Black.
New additions to this high-performance monster include a rear touchscreen display, voice activation and super-easy one-button control, while the overall experience has been abridged to make capturing the action as painless as possible.
At £349.99 / $399 / AU$569, the Hero5 Black is priced in line with the Hero4 Black that it replaces, despite the new gizmos, while video resolution is boosted to 4K at 30fps, still images jump to 12MP and ultra-smooth super slow-mo opportunities are now possible with a 1080p resolution at 120fps.
Stills can be taken in single, burst and timelapse modes, and saved as raw files for post-production tinkering. In addition, a new WDR (Wide Dynamic Range) mode, which is GoPro's version of High Dynamic Range (HDR), makes shooting perfectly exposed still images much easier.
Design and accessories
- Simplified design
- Waterproof up to 33ft (10m) - without waterproof housing
- Bigger battery, small wrap-around frame and USB Type-C port
Aesthetically, the Hero5 Black – which sits above the cuboidal Hero5 Session – packs a neat matte black exterior and remains about the size of a matchbox.
The two-inch touchscreen on the back is bright and easy to see, while a smaller screen at the front gives readouts on the shooting mode, SD card space and remaining battery.
There's also a large red button on the top of the camera, which GoPro refers to as its One-Button Control. Simply press this rubbery square and the camera powers on and immediately starts recording.
The eagle-eyed among you will notice that the Hero5 Black no longer wears the protective casing of its forefather – that's because this camera is waterproof up to 33ft (10m) straight out of the box, although the absence of a case does leave it feeling a little exposed (more on this later).
The small lens cover on the front of the camera is now removable, as GoPro offers a range of filters that are said to boost footage captured when diving or snorkelling. You simply twist to remove the cover and snap on a filter; it's also handy if the cover gets damaged.
Other notable GoPro accessories compatible with this new camera include a Remo waterproof voice-activated shutter remote button, as well as a Quik Key USB-C (yup, GoPro has finally moved to the new USB-C ports) mobile microSD card reader for downloading and transporting files when a phone or laptop isn't available.
In addition to updating its action cams, GoPro has made its first foray into the drone market with Karma, a super-simple aerial filming solution that folds up and fits neatly into a backpack.
The drone comes with a fantastic gimbal, which doubles up as a removable stabilisation grip, and this is now available to purchase separately, as the Karma Grip, for $299.99/£249.99.
It sounds pricey, but the footage captured by this neat little device it simply stunning. It's tantamount to employing a full Hollywood steady-cam for your amateur productions.
Finally, GoPro has introduced a new, sturdier and longer-life battery (meaning old ones won't be compatible) and thrown in dual microphones (front and rear) for improved audio capture – particularly good for reducing wind noise when shooting cars, bikes and other fast-moving subjects.
- Best action camera: 10 cameras for the GoPro generation
GoPro Hero5 Black Specs
- Effective Photo Resolution
- USB cable, curved adhesive mount, flat adhesive mount, frame, mounting adapter
Memory / Storage
- HiLight Tag tecnology, Loop recording, Night Lapse, Protune technology, Time-Lapse recording, Wide Dynamic Range (WDR), digital image rotation, takes photos while movie recording, voice control
- Digital image rotation, takes photos while movie recording, Wide Dynamic Range (WDR), Time-Lapse recording, Loop recording, voice control, HiLight Tag tecnology, Protune technology, Night Lapse
- Microphone Operation Mode
- Microphone Operation Mode
- Continuous Shooting Speed
- Frame Rate (Max Resolution)
- High-Definition Video Support
- HiLight Tag tecnology, Loop recording, Night Lapse, Protune technology, Time-Lapse recording, Wide Dynamic Range (WDR), digital image rotation, takes photos while movie recording, voice control
- Camcorder Effective Resolution (Photo Mode)
Action Camera Features
Service & Support
Service & Support Details
GoPro Hero Vs Hero5 Black: What's The Difference?
With the arrival of the entry-level ‘Hero’ camera, there are now four options when it comes to choosing a GoPro camera.
If price is your primary concern, you’ll certainly be looking at the Hero ($199). However, the next model up in the range, the Hero5 Black($299), provides many significant extra features which make it worth saving up the extra cash.
Let’s take a look at the differences between the GoPro Hero and the GoPro Hero5 Black.
The GoPro Hero6 Black (left) and the GoPro Hero (right)GoPro
GoPro Hero Vs Hero6 Black: What's The Difference?
GoPro Hero Vs GoPro Hero5 Session: What’s the Difference?
GoPro Hero6 Black Vs Fusion: What's The Difference?
GoPro Hero5 Black Vs Hero5 Session: What's The Difference?
GoPro Hero6 Black Vs Hero5 Black: What's The Difference?
GoPro Hero Vs GoPro Hero5 Black: Introducing the GoPro Hero
Currently the newest model in the range, the Hero is aimed at those wanting to dip their toes into the world of GoPro with the minimum financial outlay.
With looks virtually identical to its more expensive stablemates, it’s also the least expensive way to buy a real GoPro as a gift without it looking like an obviously cheaper model.
It’s not for everyone, however, as there are many important features missing which set it apart from all of the other GoPros in the current range including its closest relative, the Hero5 Black.
GoPro Hero Vs GoPro Hero5 Black: Overview
- GoPro Hero advantages: Reduced complexity, Price!
- GoPro Hero5 Black advantages: 4K video, higher resolution sensor, high frame rates, Protune, Night Photo, Looping Video, Night Lapse Photo, GPS, HDR Photo Capture, external mic input, Karma drone compatible, raw photo capture, raw audio capture.
GoPro Hero Vs GoPro Hero5 Black: Price
The Hero is available direct from GoPro at a price of $199, replacing the smaller GoPro Hero5 Session which used to sit at this price point (see here for the differences). The Hero5 Black costs an extra $100 at $299, placing it midway between the Hero and the flagship Hero6 Black in price but much closer to the latter in performance and features.
GoPro Hero Vs GoPro Hero5 Black: Design & Dimensions
Externally, there’s little to differentiate the two cameras, save for labelling and minor cosmetic differences. They also both weigh the same.
- GoPro Hero and GoPro Hero5 Black 362.3 x 44.9 x 33mm ( 2.5 x 1.8 x 1.3 in) , 117g
GoPro Hero Vs GoPro Hero5 Black: Battery
Both camera models include the same removable 1220mAh lithium-ion battery, which could come in handy if you want to share batteries between GoPros of different types.
GoPro Hero Vs GoPro Hero5 Black: Key Functional Differences
The GoPro Hero is fitted with a 10-megapixel image sensor where the Hero5 Black comes with a higher-resolution 12-megapixel version. This means the Hero5 Black is capable of taking higher-resolution still images than the Hero. Likewise, the Hero has a severely limited video resolution (see below).
Additionally, the Hero5 Black includes a GPS function, lacking on the Hero, which enables location tagging of recorded media. It’s also vastly more configurable than the Hero in both photo and video modes, which enables higher-quality image capture and delivers output more suitable for professional editing software.
GoPro Hero Vs GoPro Hero5 Black: Video Specifications
Perhaps the most obvious limitation of the Hero is that it’s restricted to 1440p resolution when shooting video. The Hero5 Black, and all other GoPro models in the range can shoot in resolutions all the way up to and including 4K, or beyond in the case of the GoPro Fusion.
The Hero is capable of smooth 60fps capture at 1080p, which also allows for half-speed slow motion when played back at 30fps. The Hero5 Black, however, doubles this performance with capture speeds up to 120fps at 1080p. It also offers a large selection of alternative frame rates, including the ‘cinematic’ 24fps mode and several others in-between. The Hero lets you choose only 60fps or 30fps.
At 1080p, the Hero enables ‘Wide’, ‘Medium’ and ‘Narrow’ shooting modes, whereas the Hero5 Black also provides ‘SuperView’ and ‘Linear’ modes for greater flexibility. SuperView enables the Hero5 Black to capture more of what’s going on around it while producing a slight ‘fisheye’ effect.
GoPro Hero Vs GoPro Hero5 Black: Audio
Both cameras come with a trio of microphones and capture stereo audio, but the Hero5 Black is capable of capturing higher-quality, uncompressed audio in the .WAV format and can accept external microphones via a 3.5mm adapter.
The GoPro Hero5 Black is almost indistinguishable from the Hero save for a subtle label (Image Credit: GoPro)GoPro
GoPro Hero Vs GoPro Hero5 Black: Photo Specifications
As mentioned earlier, the Hero comes with a lower-resolution image sensor than the Hero5 Black, so still images are less detailed. The Hero5 Black is also capable of capturing at various speeds up to 30 shots per second in burst mode, whereas the Hero is limited to exactly ten.
It’s a similar situation when it comes to capturing time lapses: The Hero5 Black can snap at configurable intervals between 0.5 seconds and 60 seconds, whereas the Hero is fixed at 0.5 seconds. Plus, the Hero5 has dedicated ‘Night Photo’ and ‘Night Lapse Photo’ modes, not present on the Hero.
GoPro Hero Vs GoPro Hero5 Black: Protune
When compared to every other current GoPro camera, the Hero is by far the most simplified and, as such, omits the majority of detailed configuration options found in other models.
Most significant is the lack of ‘Protune’ mode. Protune enables a range of functions providing the advanced and manual controls you’d expect to find on a professional camera, including exposure control and raw capture modes.
Without Protune, the Hero is more of a point-and-shoot option suited to beginners or those who don’t want to deal with a large array of possibly confusing settings.
The 2018 GoPro LineupGoPro
GoPro Hero Vs GoPro Hero5 Black: Conclusion
Despite external appearances, the Hero and Hero5 Black are very different products. The Hero is a limited and much simplified entry-level device, whereas the Hero5 Black is a former flagship product with all the bells and whistles a professional user might expect.
If you’re looking for a fun, rugged and waterproof camera to take on vacation, then both would fit the bill. But, the Hero5 Black will deliver superior quality and create output that’s easier to edit in desktop software, especially if you want to combine its output with other video sources at various frame rates.
Despite the extra cost, the Hero5 Black makes much more sense for enthusiasts and is well worth the extra money for anyone who might want to go beyond the basics.
The Hero, on the other hand, is a welcome addition to the range for those who prefer to stick to automatic settings and aren’t fussed about high-end features such as 4K or slow motion.
Full specifications of all current GoPro models are available at the GoPro Shop.
GoPro Hero5 Black
GoPro has reigned as king of the action camera, and shows no sign of abdicating the throne with the Hero5 series. The Hero5 Black is the company's latest flagship action cam, and it adds a handful of new tricks to the Hero4 Black like waterproofing without a case and a built-in touch screen. If that isn't enough, at $399.99 the Hero5 Black is also a full hundred dollars less expensive than the Hero4 Black was at launch. These changes, along with strong performance, make the Hero5 Black a clear Editors' Choice.
DesignThe Hero5 Black looks similar in size and shape to the Hero4 Black, but with a darker, matte gray finish and more rounded corners. It measures 1.8 by 2.4 by 1.4 inches (HWD) and weighs just 4.2 ounces outside of its protective case. From the front, it bears the hallmarks of the GoPro Hero series, like a monochrome LCD and a protruding rectangular lens assembly. Flip the camera over, however, and you see one of its biggest upgrades: a two-inch color touch screen built directly into the device. The Hero4 Black required an $80 accessory for touch control and a live viewfinder, but it's a part of the Hero5 Black out of the box.
The only physical controls on the Hero5 Black are a square Record button on the top and a Mode/Flag button on the right, both of which are coated in rubber to maintain a waterproof seal. The left side of the camera hides micro HDMI and USB-C ports behind a door with a rubber gasket. The bottom of the camera is home to the battery compartment and microSD card slot, also behind a gasket-equipped door.
These seals cover the physical controls and ports, making the Hero5 Black solidly waterproof. This means GoPro redesigned the protective case and mount to be smaller and lighter. Instead of thick clear plastic with rubber gaskets, the case included with the Hero5 Black is a fairly thin, light black plastic with only a thin rubberized layer along the inside to protect the camera from shocks and bumps. The case leaves the Record button and touch screen both completely uncovered. The mounting bracket at the bottom of the case is the standard GoPro double-ring design, built to be threaded between the triple-ring bracket of the various clips, stands, and other mounts GoPro offers before getting locked in with a threaded bolt that controls how easily you can pivot the camera up and down on its mount.
View All 8 Photos in Gallery
Case and MountsThe Hero5 Black comes with a protective case with mounting bracket, a lower mount with a foot that clips onto additional fixed GoPro mounts, a flat fixed mount with an adhesive foot for mounting on vehicles or any flat surface, a curved fixed mount with an adhesive foot for mounting onto a helmet, and a USB-C cable for charging the camera.
Out of the box, you can affix the Hero5 Black to nearly any flat surface or slap it on a helmet, but part of what makes a GoPro so appealing is the variety of mounts you can get for the camera to fit your exact needs. They include hand grips, chest harnesses, tripods, clamp mounts, and several other ways to attach your GoPro to nearly anything. The accessories cost $20 and above depending on the size and complexity of the mount. The forthcoming Karma drone, for instance, costs $799.99.
GoPro doesn't specify exactly how long the Hero5 Black's 1,220 mAh battery will last between charges, but the touch screen likely puts a significant drain on the camera. Anecdotally, I got about an hour and a half of shooting at New York Comic Con before the battery petered out. Make sure you put the camera to sleep by holding the Menu button for a few seconds before you put it away, or you might find a mostly drained battery the next time you take it out of your bag because the screen stayed on.
Recording SettingsThe Hero5 Black is packed with recording modes for both action and detail. It features five field of view settings: Narrow, Linear, Medium, Wide, and SuperView. It can record in 4K (3,840 by 2,160) at 24, 25, or 30 frames per second in Wide, and at 24fps in SuperView. It also supports 2.7K (2,704 by 1,524) in Linear, Medium, and Wide at 24, 25, 30, 48, 50, and 60fps, and in SuperView at 25 or 30fps. You can even record in 4:3 Wide in 2.7K at 25 or 30fps.
1440p resolution starts to open the Hero5 Black up to frame rates higher than 60, with an 80fps recording mode in addition to 24, 25, 30, 48, 50, and 60 in Wide. The real high-speed settings come into play at 1080p and 720p, however. In addition to all of the frame rates from 24 to 60 in all field of view modes in 1080p, you can record in 80fps in SuperView, 90fps in Wide, and 120fps in Wide or Narrow. The 120 fps recording setting is notable, because it can be slowed down to half speed while retaining an ultra-smooth 60fps frame rate, or dropped to quarter speed for a cinematic (and more bandwidth-friendly) 30fps. 720p goes a step further, with a 240fps mode in Narrow in addition to 25, 30, 50, 60, and 120. 720p also offers a 100fps recording mode in SuperView. If that isn't quite enough for you, you can crank the resolution down even further to WVGA (848 by 480) and record at 240fps in Wide.
Action cameras like the Hero5 Black are meant for video recording far more than still photos, but you can still take snapshots at up to 12 megapixels. The camera also has burst modes for shooting 3, 5, 10, or 30 shots per second, 10 or 30 shots every 2 or 3 seconds, or 30 shots every 6 seconds. You can also take time-lapse video with the camera capturing a frame every 0.5, 1, 2, 5, 10, 30, or 60 seconds.
Mobile Control and Touch ScreenLike previous GoPros, you can control the Hero5 Black with an app for access to a variety of recording options and to view, edit, and transfer your recordings to your mobile device. The Hero5 Black supports both Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, and the app walks you through a very simple pairing process that I used to connect the camera to my smartphone in just a couple of minutes. Once connected, you can use your phone as a remote viewfinder (with a second or so of lag) and start recording or taking pictures.
The addition of the touch screen means you can access recording options without using your smartphone or repeatedly pressing a button. I could adjust the resolution, field of view, and frame rate on the fly by tapping the screen and selecting the recording mode I wanted. Incompatible frame rate settings are grayed out once you select a resolution and field of view, so you don't need to worry about entering the wrong combination. This is one of the the Hero5 Black's handiest upgrades.
PerformanceVideo recorded with the Hero5 Black looks excellent. The footage above from New York Comic Con was recorded in 4K in SuperView at 30 fps. As you can see, the crowds look crisp and vibrant, particularly the line recorded outside. The indoor video suffers from some slight motion blur due to the lower light and increased horizontal movement, but it still looks very good. The audio is surprisingly clear, showing a consistent improvement in sound quality from the previous version as well. You can also use an external microphone, but you need to buy an optional $20 adapter.
High-speed video looks good as well, though obviously lighting and the type of movement being recorded will impact quality. The clip above shows a Nerf RapidStrike being fired at 240 frames per second at 720p, slowed down to 24 frames per second. The video was brightened in editing, but each dart can be seen flying smoothly from the gun, an impressive feat considering the RapidStrike fires five darts per second, and that the lighting in our test lab is a bit dimmer than the light on the NYCC floor.
ConclusionsThe GoPro Hero5 Black is an across-the-board improvement over the Hero4 Black. Its built-in touch screen and waterproofing make it easier to use than ever, its video and audio quality are both excellent, and at $400, it costs a full hundred dollars less than the Hero4 Black did at launch. That makes GoPro's new flagship action camera our new Editors' Choice in the category. If you want to spend a bit less and don't mind sacrificing the touch screen, the GoPro Hero5 Session offers nearly as good 4K and high-speed recording in a smaller, less expensive package. And if you don't need 4K, the GoPro Hero4 Session (now called the Hero Session) is available for just $200.
GoPro stays king of the slopes, half pipes, and trails with the Hero5 Black“The Hero5 Black is a proper successor to the Hero4, and it’s worth the upgrade.”
- Rugged and waterproof without housing
- Great photo and video quality
- Responsive touchscreen
- Three stereo mics, with noise canceling
- Voice control
- Battery life remains the same
- Requires some new accessories
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In tech, two years is a long time to wait for a new product, but that’s how long GoPro took to introduce the Hero5 Black ($399), and naturally, expectations were high. GoPro went back to a yearly release schedule for the newly unveiled Hero6 Black, which is built on the same platform as the Hero5 and looks nearly identical. But the Hero5 remains in the lineup — and at the same $399 price (the Hero6 is $499). It has also received new features since we originally tested it. It seemed the perfect time revisit our GoPro Hero5 Black review, and to compare the camera to the new Hero6.
At time of launch, the Hero5 Black represented a radical new approach to design for GoPro. Many features were designed to make the camera much more convenient to use; it still captures great videos and photos, but now you have benefits like voice control, image stabilization, and durability. Services and apps made it easier to pull content off the camera, edit them into short videos, and share them online. It’s a better camera than the Hero4 Black and Silver in every way, and it launched at a lower price.
With the Hero5 Black, GoPro also simplified its product lineup, distilling it down to just three cameras; the Hero6 Black adds a fourth, but the others all stay the same and are clearly delineated by features and price. The Hero5 Session ($299) and original Hero Session ($199) are both compact, lower-budget options that don’t include LCD screens, but the Hero5 version can shoot in 4K. The Hero5 Black also complements GoPro’s Karma drone and handheld gimbal, which were announced at the same time.
Design and features
GoPro introduced the biggest design change in the Hero5 Black. While the evolution from the Hero2 to the Hero4 saw the camera get smaller in size, the Hero5 Black is slightly larger and heavier. It’s still rectangular, but the corners are now curved and the body has a softer feel. That’s because the camera is now completely rugged and waterproof without the need for a protective housing — an accessory included with previous Hero cameras. It’s a cleaner look with a rubberized exterior, and GoPro is using a new shade of gray and matte black from previous generations. GoPro really wants you to know that this is a brand new camera.
The ruggedness means you can take the Hero5 Black into water (down to 33 feet) or toss it around, as is. We carried our review unit through the rain, dunked it in water, and dropped it more times than we count, and it continued working fine. The downside is that the camera body will suffer dings and scratches (we didn’t notice any damage to the 2-inch LCD, although we could imagine that happening), so for some protection, it’s best to use the camera with the Frame housing ($30). An optional underwater housing, the Super Suit, is available for $50 if you want to take the camera into deeper water.
As with all rugged cameras, you still have to make sure the doors are properly closed and sealed. The removable cover on the side is now a hinged door that protects the Micro HDMI and USB Type-C ports. (The cover is easy to remove for mounting the Hero5 to the Karma Grip handheld gimbal or drone.) Yes, GoPro finally ditched the Mini USB port, bypassing Micro USB in favor of the faster, reversible standard. That does mean you’ll need new cables if you haven’t adopted Type-C yet; fortunately one is included with the camera.
The coolest addition: voice control.
The MicroSD card slot is now located in the battery compartment, at the bottom. A new and higher-capacity 1,220mAh battery charges faster than before, but that also means you won’t be able to use the one from the Hero4 Black. Still, you can expect around one-and-a-half hours before it dies — a little more if used casually, less if it’s used continuously with the display and wireless on. If you plan on long shooting sessions, you can pack spare Hero5 batteries or an external battery pack.
Previous Hero cameras usually suffered from terrible audio, since they had to be stuffed in an underwater housing. Now that the Hero5 Black doesn’t need one, you can capture higher-quality audio, thanks to the three stereo mics. With manual audio control enabled, the mics can switch between stereo or wind-noise reduction. If you’ve ever used a GoPro at speed, you know this is an issue. No amount of noise-reduction technology could compensate for the really strong winds we encountered, but it does bring it down to a more comfortable level.
Because the Hero5 Black uses a Type-C USB connector, we could no longer use our Mini USB microphone adapter with higher quality microphones. You’ll need to shell out another $50 for one. As for the many GoPro accessories in the market and the ones you already own, they will still work.
For video and photo capture, the Hero5 Black retains the same specs as the Hero4 Black, although it’s not repurposing the same chipset. It can shoot up to 4K at 30 frames per second and Full HD 1080p at 120 fps (max bit rate is 60Mbps), and photos up to 12 megapixels (burst, time-lapse, night-lapse modes are still there). With Protune enabled, you can adjust shooting parameters like color, white balance, ISO, shutter, exposure, etc (note: some settings are unavailable in select modes). Most consumers probably wouldn’t bother with Protune, but it lets pro users like filmmakers adjust the picture quality to match the other cameras they are using in a production, for example.
A new setting, called Linear-View, eliminates the distortion when shooting in wide-angle (available in 2.7K or 1080p at up to 60 fps). You can also capture photos in RAW or wide-dynamic-range (WDR) now; the former gives you greater editing flexibility, and the latter brings out highlights and shadows (similar to HDR).
GoPro fans have been clamoring for image stabilization (IS), and the Hero5 Black introduces electronic IS for the first time. Unlike optical IS, EIS uses software to compensate for shake. It’s not going to make the bumps from your bike ride disappear completely, but it will make it considerably less jittery and easier on your viewers’ eyes. Note that when enabled, the sensor crops a bit into the image.
The Hero5 Black also now has GPS built in, which embeds location data into your videos and photos. The camera has Wi-Fi and Bluetooth for pairing with an optional remote control (there’s a new version, called Remo) or the new GoPro Capture smartphone app.
Perhaps the biggest improvement GoPro made to the Hero5 Black is the controls. The front power/mode button is gone, leaving only a shutter button and side button, which now handles power, mode (photo, video, burst, or time-lapse), and HiLight tagging.
But you don’t have to power it up first to take a video. Pressing the shutter button on top initiates either photo or video recording (you can select the shooting mode in the menu). It takes a second before the camera starts recording, but it’s handy for capturing impromptu moments.
The camera retains the front monochrome LCD, but it now functions more as a status display for important stats like battery life and remaining storage capacity, whereas in the past it was used to change settings. That’s no longer necessary because the Hero5 Black has a 2-inch touchscreen for handling all controls, live view, and playback.
The bright LCD was one of the best features about the last-gen Hero4 Silver, but the Hero4 Black couldn’t support both 4K and a display due to battery and heat issues. Now the Hero5 Black has one, and the new user interface makes it even more useful. The touch sensitivity is way more responsive, making it easy to swipe through menus as fluidly as any good smartphone can, and we didn’t have issues viewing it under bright sunlight. You can adjust every feature and menu option, and the menus are more intuitive than before. GoPro includes an onscreen tutorial that quickly guides you on how to use the screen, which is a nice touch. We encountered some lag and response issues when we had the camera inside the Frame, however.
But the coolest addition is voice control. When you’re engaged in an activity or your hands just aren’t free, it’s not easy to fumble with on-camera controls. Some companies, like Sony, offer a wrist controller accessory, but with the Hero5 Black you can just say, “GoPro, take a photo,” “GoPro, start recording,” “GoPro, HiLight,” or other commands – a total of 12 at the moment. More will arrive via future software updates. It supports seven languages (Chinese, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, and Spanish) and some, like English, have regional options, like Australian and U.K.
The three mics are capable of picking up commands, even if there’s background noise — so well, in fact, that you could activate multiple Hero5 cameras at the same time, provided they are close by. We didn’t need to talk very loud for our commands to register.
And it works: We tried it in English, Spanish, German, Chinese, and Italian, and while we aren’t fluent in some of those languages, we were still able to initiate recording. You do, however, need to use exact phrasing. One fun thing that isn’t officially mentioned is that the camera can also recognize certain expletives and exclamations as potentially cool moments to HiLight. After all, “Oh s**t!” probably accompanies some pretty epic video.
Making a connected camera seems to be the Holy Grail that eludes camera makers, but GoPro has done a better job than most. GoPro said that the Hero5 would be the company’s most connected camera, and part of that solution, besides Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, is a new cloud service called GoPro Plus.
For $5 a month after a 60-day free trial, users can set their Hero5 Black to automatically upload content to the cloud, while it’s charging (wireless needs to be enabled, naturally). This isn’t just a backup solution, but it lets you access the content later for editing, either from a phone or computer. Membership also lets you use licensed music, and offers discounts on accessories and other products, as well as technical support. GoPro hasn’t officially capped storage capacity, but to make the content easier to upload, edit, and share, videos are restricted to 1080p at 30 fps. You’ll need to pull 4K content off the camera the old-fashion way, but that’s the method video editors working with 4K content employ anyway.
Although GoPros are handy for capturing video and photos, many people don’t know what to do with that content. GoPro is acknowledging this issue, in part by making its Quik editing app for mobile and desktop part of the solution. With Quik you can access the content off GoPro Plus or a camera paired with a smartphone or tablet, and quickly create short video clips that are shareable.
You can let Quik automatically compile the clips and find what its algorithms think are the best moments, or fine-tune the editing yourself. Lay a soundtrack that fits the mood of your video, add some text, and you’re set. It’s a simple editing app to use, but the smaller smartphone screen makes it a bit difficult to trim down the videos, if you’re editing on the go. The latest firmware update introduces auto download from the camera to a paired phone, plus a new feature called QuikStory, which automatically compiles a day’s worth of clips into a story you can share.
At time of launch, GoPro renamed its mobile app to Capture app (iOS and Android), but it’s essentially the same app. We guess the name didn’t catch on, because with the launch of the Hero6 Black, GoPro has reverted to its namesake. GoPro’s app has one of the easiest pairing methods for connecting a camera to a phone or tablet, and you can perform the same functions as you can with the rear LCD, but remotely and much faster.
Videos with the electronic image stabilization enabled do exhibit a smoother picture quality, but it can’t fix really bouncy situations, like an RC car travelling up a mound of jagged rocks. See our sample footage — we tried. But for mild action, you will notice some improvement in the video quality. Casually walking up a hill, we could tell the difference. Unfortunately, the feature isn’t available during 4K shooting or frame rates higher than 30fps (when in 4K, use a stabilizing accessory).
This is one of the big areas of improvement that GoPro made with the Hero6 Black. Thanks to a new custom processor in that camera, it performs more accurate stabilization that the company says is akin to mounting the camera in a gimbal. In our testing, we were impressed, but the Hero5 Black may be just fine for the average user.
“Oh s**t!” probably accompanies some pretty epic video.
With the Auto Low Light function enabled, the footage we shot displayed more details than the one with it off. However, the noise level is more noticeable and the camera will lower the frame rate to compensate. A camera like the GoPro isn’t really a low-light champ, but it’s capable when needed, or when used creatively with an external light source. If you set the camera still, you can capture some interesting night shots using the Night Lapse feature.
For a small camera, the Hero5 Black is able to record smooth videos with nice details and colors. Compared to the Hero4 generation, the Hero5 Black seems to handle bright conditions better, as images don’t look as washed out. We didn’t notice any jittery frames or any major issues that were distracting.
We recorded most of our videos in 1080p, and some in 2K and 4K. The 1080p videos allowed us to edit and share straight from the camera and to our phone – using the Quik app – and then online. Some pros like to shoot in the highest resolution and downscale it for today’s screens, but unless you have the ability to view and edit 2K and 4K videos, sticking with 1080p should be sufficient unless you want to future-proof the videos.
With ample light, the Hero5 Black continues to be a very good camera for shooting stills. They’ll look nice when shared on social media or printed out in small sizes, but we wouldn’t blow them up, as picture quality begins do degrade at larger sizes. Color accuracy is good, with no noticeable color fringing, although some photos exhibited rolling shutter issues. With that said, the camera and other small cameras like it really need light; photos (and videos) shot under overcast skies weren’t as vivid as we would like.
The option of fine-tuning the settings via Protune is nice to have. If you’re shooting a video meant for production, or if you’re trying to combine GoPro footage with another camera, it’s worthwhile to play around with the settings. As we said earlier, we don’t think most GoPro users would bother, and just use the auto settings instead. That’s just fine, because the Hero5 Black is capable of delivering nice videos and photos in its default setting.
Telemetry displays enhance your adventures
Announced sometime after the camera itself, GoPro updated the Hero5 Black with the ability to log all sorts of telemetry data alongside the video. Using the onboard GPS and other sensors, the camera tracks altitude, elevation gain, speed, G-force, distance traveled, direction, and course position. Each data point can be toggled on individually, and gauges can be resized or moved so users can customize the video overlays to their liking. For example, a rock climber could turn on altitude and elevation gain, while a race car driver could go with speed, g-force, and course position.
While working with the telemetry data in GoPro’s Quik desktop app is easy, it is also considerably more limiting than competitor Garmin’s VIRB Edit app. GoPro allows just a single display style for every gauge and piece of information, as opposed to the many different graphical overlays, text options, and color choices offered by Garmin. Still, it’s nice to see telemetry information come to GoPro, especially as a surprise announcement after the Hero5 Black had already been available.
The Hero5 Black comes with a standard one-year warranty. GoPro now also offers a two-year replacement plan, called GoPro Care, which covers accidental damage and includes premium customer support and consulting, with some limitations. GoPro Care costs $79 for the Hero5 Black.
Despite being dethroned by the Hero6 Black as the flagship, the GoPro Hero5 Black is still a very capable camera. It has become what GoPro would have called the Silver model, if Silver was still around. Importantly, it is simple to operate out of the box, but it can be as advanced as you need it to be thanks to ProTune. And no other manufacturer offers software — mobile, desktop, and online — that nicely complements the cameras like GoPro. While we certainly would have appreciated a price drop now that the camera is a year old and the Hero6 is here, at $399 the Hero5 Black is still a good value — and the fact that the price hasn’t changed is a testament to GoPro’s commanding position in the action camera market.
Are there better alternatives?
It took GoPro two years to introduce the completely redesigned Hero5 Black, but just twelve months later, the company has already one-upped it. The Hero6 Black is the most obvious alternative, and offers 4K video at 60 fps, improved stabilization, and better dynamic range, and low-light capabilities. It does cost $100 more, however, which will put it out of reach for some action cam shoppers.
Some of GoPro’s competitors also offer compelling alternatives: Sony, for one, offers great options in its Action Cam series, in terms of image quality, features, and use (its flagship model supports 4K and optical image stabilization). But Sony hasn’t updated its product line for some time. The Yi 4K+ was the first to introduce 4K/60p recording, beating the GoPro Hero6 by several months (and a couple hundred dollars), but that camera does not have the same build quality as the Hero5/Hero6 Black and requires an external waterproof case. But in the action cam world, it’s not just about hardware; software plays a big role, and GoPro clearly has a lead.
Still, no other action cam we’ve used offers the combination of ease of use, features (rugged build, voice control, image stabilization, and touchscreen LCD are just some of the highlights), and image quality the Hero5 Black does.
How long will it last?
We used the Hero4 Silver and Hero4 Black models for years after their release — and they still have plenty of life in them, mind you. The Hero5 Black should get similar longevity (assuming you don’t lose it over a cliff or at the bottom of the bottom of the ocean). The camera’s 4K/30p footage is more than sufficient for most people and most applications today. We do ponder the camera’s physical robustness, as it no longer requires a protective housing. The Hero4 models are better secured due to the tough polycarbonate housing that’s included, so there’s a chance the Hero5 may be more susceptible to damage. We recommend getting the SuperSuit housing, or purchase GoPro’s extra warranty plan.
Should you buy it?
The Hero5 Black was a proper successor to the Hero4, and definitely worth the upgrade. Even in the shadow of the new Hero6 Black, it remains a very capable action cam. The lower list price makes it more affordable, so if you’re shopping for a new action cam, definitely still consider the Hero5 Black at the top of the list.
This review was originally published on October 5, 2016. The product has been re-tested to address new features and firmware, and we note its difference with the newly announced Hero6 Black. The article has been updated to reflect any significant changes.